The Scandalous Flirt (Cinderella Sisterhood #6) by Olivia Drake
So continues the exploits of an enchanted pair of shoes helping young women trapped in less than stellar circumstances.
Lady Clarissa Milford is keeper of the shoes and faerie godmother, bestowing these magical 'elegant dancing slippers ... fashioned of rich garnet silk and covered in tiny crystal beads that sparkled in the daylight,' as she sees fit. As Lady Milford explains, they must be returned when no longer needed.
With half a mind to refuse charity of any sort, Rory tries the shoes on and 'Softness enveloped her feet as if the shoes had been stitched by a master cobbler expressly for her [she is] ... buoyed by an irresistible sense of lightness.' The shoes lure the person in it seems and then mould themselves almost parasitically to the wearer. Magical!
Aurora (Rory) Paxton was banished to the country for eight years after being caught in a compromising position with an Italian diplomat. The cad turned out to be married. Her disgrace seems to have been a handy excuse for her stepmother to keep Rory away. She wasn't even notified of her father's death until after the funeral.
Now, eight years later Rory's stepmother Kitty needs her help. Kitty is being blackmailed over a packet of love letters from years ago. Just as Rory's half sister Celeste has become engaged to a wealthy Duke, old enough to be her father. Mmm!
Kitty is fearful that should the letters become public the Duke will be frightened off.
Of course Rory is still treated like a second class citizen by her stepmother. When she goes to investigate a likely suspect, Lucas Vale, Marquess of Dashell, by becoming his mother's companion, things take an interesting turn.
And we mustn't forget Rory's secret life as the women's rights broadsheet contributor, Miss Cellany.
A regency romance with a difference.
A NetGalley ARC